So this past Christmas, my partner and I went to Vermont with his family for a few days of winter fun (aka Skiing). I was very excited to try downhill skiing, but of course was a little worried because I was so out of shape. I work in film & television in the production offices and, well, its not exactly a job that lends itself to healthy living between the sedentary nature of my job and the catered food! It was decided since I had never downhill skied before, the best thing for me would be to do a 3 day intro course that came with a ski lift pass for the afternoons after my lessons.
Well! First things first, I had to get kitted out with ski boots, skis and poles. Problem #1 cropped up as I tried so very hard to do up the ski boots. As some of you may know, I have very very tiny ankles and wrists (and therefore I am obviously small boned) however I have ridiculously large calves! In the end I was able to do them up, but my heels weren't really touching the bottoms of the boots. The skis and poles themselves weren't a problem.
Teaching the class was a jolly fella with quite the impressive beard. He was patient and thorough and while I was getting the hang of the technique, there were many things my poor body was having issue with. The boots for one were just absolutely excruciating, and then there was the whole "pizza/french fries" practice for starting up and slowing down. My hips open pretty well to the outside, but barely at all to the inside. What ended up happening was a slooooooow and extremely painful go down the bunny hill with my instructor holding my hands and telling me where to lean etc. By the bottom of the hill I was in tears, between the boots which were causing some serious pain in my shins to my hips which were just saying "Aw HELLS no!" to the "pizza" stance.
I decided then and there that skiing was not for me.
That afternoon, I started snowboarding.
I was already pretty wiped from the morning and in a bit of pain in my shins (which took weeks to go away, I'm certain I did some significant internal bruising there!) but was determined to be able to enjoy SOME sort of outdoor winter sport. I mean, c'mon, I had bought a pair of goggles!
My teachers for this first afternoon class were a couple of seriously "dude!" type snowboarders. I believe one was named Kyle. Maybe. Anyways, they were very chill and knew that I had had quite the morning and since there was only one other girl in the class, we took it very slow and learned how to start and stop going down a very slight ....well bump really. My legs were screaming by the end of that first day, but I was finally having fun and my poor shins were at least more comfortable-ish in the snowboarding boots. Also, I gotta say the Snowboarder Swagger looks way more awesome than the silly Skier Shuffle. (Gotta take a jab at the Skiers since all of Dave's family were making jabs at me turning over to the darkside of Snowboarding!).
Fast forward two more days and my legs were WRECKED! Since I'm a "regular" stance kinda gal (meaning I lead with my left leg), my left thigh was on fire...for those of you who don't know, in snowboarding, the leg you lead with gets the most weight put on it so you can control how fast you're going. Lean all the way back and you're slippin and sliding faster than that little mouse from Looney Tunes! I was also at this point expected to be able to clip in both feet on the board and get up without any assistance at the top of the hill! This was my breaking point. My snowpants were rather tight round my midsection, and as such, bending over to do up my boots on the board was difficult and made me get out of breath. Also, the getting up was extremely difficult. While Dave and his family were impressed by my tenacity, I was embarrassed by my lack of physical fitness. I decided that I needed to do something, and it needed to be a bit more drastic than Weight Watchers. I didn't want to just drop pounds, I wanted muscle and I wanted to be fit. Sooo....
TO THE INTERWEBS!
I had been intruiged by the Jillian Michaels website before, as its cost ($4/wk) was better than Weight Watchers, and I knew from the Biggest Loser that Jillian would definitely be the one who would kick my butt into shape! However, it took a few more months before I finally committed to the program. My friend Katie decided to do the 30 Day Shred, and I figured "Hey for $12, I can give that a shot!" So I did. I signed up for the site, started counting my calories and started the 30 Day Shred. It was tough, and there were things I couldn't do, but by the end of the month I had finally progressed to the Level 2 workout.
Then I started noticing threads on the website talking about Jillians new workout system, the Body Revolution. After hmming and hawing and debating in my head about the price, I caved and bought it. I'm about halfway through now, and I've stuck to it. I'm down 25lbs, and down over 4 inches in the waist and over 2 in the hips/butt area. 25lbs I may be down, but there's a long long road ahead of me. I know this, and I'm ready for it.
A few things to know:
At my heaviest, I was 260lbs.
I'm now in the mid 230s.
I couldn't balance on one foot to save my life at the beginning of my journey. I can now.
I still have issues with pushups and can only do the "girl" style, but I'm working on it.
I couldn't really make it down the bunny hill on my snowboard last year.
This year, I will.